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Posted: 2/1/2006 8:47:49 AM EDT
I bought a bare-bone SA USGI-A1, enjoy it very much. What to do next?

I am thinking about getting the next 1911, here are my consideration:

1. Upgrade the GI, by sending it to a 1911 smith

2. Buy a "loaded" SA, Kimber, Colt etc..

my question is if I send the GI to a smith, and get the same features as a "loaded" gun, would I be saving or wasting money?

or do I buy a loaded 1911 and then send it to a smith for more customize work, would that be the way to go?

I want this gun to be a target/bullseye gun, so a match trigger is a must. {therefor my main concern is can I buy one that shoots like a bullseye gun out of the box, if so , which one(s)?}

thanks
Link Posted: 2/1/2006 9:41:34 AM EDT
Although I'm not (yet) a 1911 owner, I prefer the uniqueness that comes with customizing a gun yourself (or to your tastes by a 'smith). For me, a lot of the cool factor of custom guns is lost when some one else can get the exact same thing right off of the shelf.
Link Posted: 2/1/2006 9:47:36 AM EDT
No reason you can't have two 1911's!
Having customized the heck out of a Colt Series 70 back in the day, I would tell you to leave the GI stock and get yourself a Loaded SA or Kimber.

Link Posted: 2/1/2006 10:01:57 AM EDT
IMHO, I would just spend the money and buy a new one. If you want a bullseye gun then buy one. Springfield has the Trophy Match witch is a great gun. Kimber has the Gold Match pistol and Smith and Wesson has the Doug Koenig series. There's lots of options I'm sure I missed but these are the "mass produced" ones that come to mind.
Link Posted: 2/1/2006 11:21:17 AM EDT
If U pay to customize the gun, it will cost U more than a Loaded Springfield does - Either get a Milspec, maybe get a trigger job and be happy with that, or just go ahead and get the Loaded. I too thought about buying a stainless Mil Spec - All I would do it put on some better sights and get a full length guide rod and a better thumb safety. Just those things will knock me into the range of the loaded pistols.

look at the base S&W pistols too.
Link Posted: 2/1/2006 12:02:42 PM EDT
I have browsed through the SA and the Kimber catalog (2005), they have sooo many model to chose from!

From a bullseyes website, and from others I've read, they all mentioned buying a entry level and send it to a 1911 smith. It seems like they are saying for the money you spend on a loaded "mass production" target pistol you will never equal to a custom trigger job and fittings done by a good 1911 smith.

I wonder what the board think about that.

p.s. I am secretly hoping someone will say.. "nah, just buy a xyz , take it out of the box and go shoot"
Link Posted: 2/1/2006 12:23:16 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/1/2006 2:09:12 PM EDT
If you want a true bullseye gun, for shooting nothing but bullseye/targets, have one built or modified to your specs. That way you will get what you want. Then you can buy another 1911 for everything else.
Link Posted: 2/3/2006 8:17:06 AM EDT
I went over to the 1911 forum and read a post about RRA's Bullseye Wadcutter.

Has any of you experienced (not advertisement links) about the Wadcutter vs the NM Hardball mentioned above?

so far I see the W is guaranteed to shoot 1 1/2in at 50yd and the NM is 3in at 50yrd. [not that I can ever do that anyway, but just knowing what the gun is capable of is kind of nice]
Link Posted: 2/3/2006 8:57:37 AM EDT
I like the RRA stuff also. I think they are a great bang for the buck.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:14:04 PM EDT
Once you have a 1911, you best follow-up investment (by far) is to buy another. Each time you feel like modifying one, buy another instead. Then when you retire, you'll have plenty of them to tinker with.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 5:16:33 PM EDT
Most any name smith can get you a match/target style trigger.

To do a full-house build, I would 1st talk to the gunsmith you want to use. Tell them what you want, they'll recommend certain things.

For a full-house build, buy a high quality slide and frame (Colt, Baer, McCormick, Wilson, etc). If you start with a complete gun many of the parts are gong to be replaced anyway, so why pay parts you aren't going to use?

SA GI's are often used as base guns for builds.

Check www.yost-bonitz.com

Les Baer and Rock River offer very good target type pistols out of the box. I have a 1.5" guaranteed Baer Premier II. It is everything it is cracked up to be.



Link Posted: 2/6/2006 5:31:20 PM EDT
I first got bit and purchased (don't laugh) a Firestorm. Cheap 1911. Ok so it doesn't use any standard 1911 parts. So I did what any good gun owner would, I went and bought a new one. So this time I went and got a Loaded Springfield Armory 1911 Bi-Tone. I was super impressed with this gun. Dead accurate right out of the gate. Can't say the same for that Firestorm.

So now switching jobs and getting some extra money out of it, I went and bought a 4" Kimber PLE.

Yeah its that bad. Just as bad as my AR habit.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 6:07:48 PM EDT
Get another! Lord knows one is not enough. I like the Colt XSE models.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 7:02:34 PM EDT
The smartest thing to do, after you get the 1911 bug, is to cut up all of your credit cards and turn all money management matters over to another member of your household.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 8:34:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By J929626:
The smartest thing to do, after you get the 1911 bug, is to cut up all of your credit cards and turn all money management matters over to another member of your household.



+1

The temptation to keep getting 1911 pistols until I max out ALL of my credit cards is VERY hard to overcome!
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 8:36:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By J929626:
The smartest thing to do, after you get the 1911 bug, is to cut up all of your credit cards and turn all money management matters over to another member of your household.



I'll second this....otherwise, 3 months from now, this will happen to you:

Link Posted: 2/10/2006 9:10:15 PM EDT
Not to be confused, but

GI's are great guns for the money, awesome value at under 450 (most places), and make great guns go build off of.

Loaded Springfields and Kimbers are also great guns, but you still will never get the same gun as you would getting a semi-custom (Wilson, Brown) or a full custom.

Right now I have my Champion off at Tripp Research getting a complete redo... I will then have a true custom gun.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 9:32:15 PM EDT
It depends on the bug...there are several varieties.

One bug is to pick up cheap 1911's, hope they work to your satisifaction, shoot 'em a lot, and be happy. You shouldn't be paying more than 6-700 in this catagory.

Another is to pick up pricier known-good 1911's, know they'll work to your satisifaction out of the box, shoot 'em a lot, and be happy. This ranges from around 800 to 1200 or so.

Yet another is to pick up pricy semi-customs, be them factory or one-offs. This includes Nighthawks, Springfield Operators, etc. Prices generally start at 1500 and can top out around 2500-3000. These are semi-factory, and have manufacturer's warantees...just like any bone-stock Colt you pick up at the store.

Another is the custom guy...buy an inexpensive 1911 as in bug #1, but then bundle it up and send it off to a quality smith like YoBo, CT Brian, etc for a working over. Styles range from mild to wild, and prices go from 2500 to over 5 large. These are pieces you can hang your hat on, leave for your grandkid, and in 50 years, still take it out to shoot and not worry it's out-of-spec anywhere. These are pretty much as good as it gets.


Then there's the wacko bug, which I have. Its where you get a distressed, used, or otherwise good 1911's on the used market, and make them better yourself using some files, a dremel, some stones, and a lot of swearing. You'll find yourself spending more in parts than you paid for the gun. You'll discover that those gunsmithing books you bought at Cabelas are a good primer, but aren't exactily horribly useful for what you want to try to do. You'll find yourself ordering the full set of Gunsmith Kinks from Brownell's, and discover they're great bathroom reading material...when you're not looking at a shop manual somewhere, trying to decide if you want to radius your oversize un-fitted firing pin stop to original 1911 specs, or to 1911A1 spec. You'll find yourself wanting to learn how to weld because it seems like the best way to build up areas you filed too much away from. Arguing things like guide rods will seem stupid, because you've read both the 1911 and 1911A1 spec, and understand it was designed that way for a reason. When you see a 1911 with an external extractor, your first thought will be "Why the hell would anyone want that? You can't tune one of those!" You'll spend hours and hours working on them, and still find something else that could be made better or needs more work...starting with making sure it feeds right, trigger is crisp, and ending up with watching the timing of the action and tuning the extractor/ejector to the point where every round, from first to last, lands in the exact same spot on the ground, each and every time...not because you need to, but because you can.


Welcome to one of the 1911 bugs
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 5:09:01 AM EDT
Then once you have the wacko bug you might graduate to the all out over the top lunacy bug. I got it. You will begin to look at frames and slides in the white. You will look at all of the differant parts. You will then spend money, sell your kids, your dogs and your family will not se you for hours. Late nights gently lapping slides to frames and blending bits and piecs for that perfect fit. A true custom pistol that you made. Oh the humanity!!!!!!!!!!!! My name is Jon and I am a buildaholic. Do not underestmate the power of the dark side. You can not escape.

Seriously though. If you want a true custom that is the way of it. Build it yourself from metal that is in the white or(gulp) starting with an 80% frame.

Good luck
Aim straight and have fun
Jon
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 5:12:53 AM EDT
A modified 1911 will have higher quality parts than the off the shelf Kimber or Springfield. With a little professional smithing you can have a very nice pistol for not alot of money.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 7:13:43 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AZta2guy:
Then once you have the wacko bug you might graduate to the all out over the top lunacy bug. I got it. You will begin to look at frames and slides in the white. You will look at all of the differant parts. You will then spend money, sell your kids, your dogs and your family will not se you for hours. Late nights gently lapping slides to frames and blending bits and piecs for that perfect fit. A true custom pistol that you made. Oh the humanity!!!!!!!!!!!! My name is Jon and I am a buildaholic. Do not underestmate the power of the dark side. You can not escape.

Seriously though. If you want a true custom that is the way of it. Build it yourself from metal that is in the white or(gulp) starting with an 80% frame.

Good luck
Aim straight and have fun
Jon



That's what I fear

(Un)Fortunatly, I have no machine shop tools and no skills in that arena...so I haven't been tempted to start with an %80 yet. Also don't have any bluing equipment.

I can safely say though, if I did...I'd be the idiot test-bluing things every evening/weekend, looking to replicate that perfect high-sheen Colt Royal Blue from the 20's...
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 4:16:41 PM EDT
Buy the loaded, and cusatomize the GI.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 5:59:24 PM EDT
Loaded is a good call. Pretty happy with my two....

This thread has got me thinking (uh oh.....).

Kimber Desert Warrior got here a week ago. Third 1911 in 3 1/2 months. Just ordered (two days ago) a Surefire X200B weapon light for the Warrior (unplanned purchase). Bought another Wilderness belt and two Milt Sparks mag puouches earlier in the week (unplanned this early). Today, I find a great deal on Wilson 47D mags in the EE and ordered 5 (had 7, I guess I needed more? ). And then along comes this sweet Milt Sparks VM-2..... Oh, I guess I neglected to mention the two Bullet Proof WC extractors a couple weeks back, or the Bullet Proof WC slide stop I ordered yesterday (the Micro though cured of the FTF by the new tuned extractor and polished ramp, is now suffering premature slidelock..... a bit of Dremel work didn't fix it, so off to Brownels site I went).

Is there a graphic with $ flying?
Hey, it's all good. It's fun. And it may someday save my life. Or not. But, it's fun!

Ever known anyone who didn't love their addictions?
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 5:37:55 PM EDT
6 months ago I hated 1911's and thought Glocks were the best thing ever invented......and then I spent a full day shooting a 1911. DAMN I WISH I HAD NEVER SHOT THAT GUN!!

So here we are one TRS, one Yost 1* Elite, and one Kimber Classic 1 already with me, and two custom 1911s on order. If only I had declined and stuck to my Glocks.

1911's are like a drug. The more you shoot them, think about them, surf the internet reading about them, the more you have to keep doing it. I could just sit on the different forums for 8 hours and read about 1911's - but I try to just go shoot instead.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 6:41:21 AM EDT
so many 1911, so little money, so irritated wify , (so little excuses for "but honey, I need this gun")..
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 8:27:41 AM EDT
Yeah I gave up trying to explain to my girlfriend why it is absolutely essential that I but this 1911 or tha one. GEEZ I only have 3, its not like I have 48 (yet).
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 1:42:47 PM EDT
I have so many different bugs that they have to fight each other for dominance.
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 2:32:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By drobs:
No reason you can't have two 1911's!
Having customized the heck out of a Colt Series 70 back in the day, I would tell you to leave the GI stock and get yourself a Loaded SA or Kimber.




Listen to this man.....He knows !!!
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 10:01:10 PM EDT
buy another!
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 8:25:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By drobs:
No reason you can't have two 1911's!
Having customized the heck out of a Colt Series 70 back in the day, I would tell you to leave the GI stock and get yourself a Loaded SA or Kimber.




I've read several people speak of the loaded SA, and I do like my SA GI, so I would want to get another from SA

but which loaded?? (just trying to open up another can of worms!!)

I'm interested in target shooting and maybe competition later on, not looking to carry , concealed or defend with this 1911. Hope that narrow the selections down a bit.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 9:20:48 AM EDT

but which loaded?? (just trying to open up another can of worms!!)



Well, I bought a Micro Compact. Then the bug bit again. I bought a park'ed full size Loaded. Then the bug bit again..... Kimber Desert Warrior.

Next, I'm gonna save for a Wilson CQB (going up in price before I can buy, too ).
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 10:32:16 AM EDT
There are far worse addictions.
1911s are indeed habit forming especially if you have the $ to buy the really good ones.

Take a look here:

Yost-Bonitz

The 1* Enhanced is IMHO the absolute best buy in a 1911.


Want to see what a 1911 can be:

Ted Yost Signature Edition Series 80 Colt
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 1:58:00 PM EDT

Originally Posted By wwp512:

Originally Posted By drobs:
No reason you can't have two 1911's!
Having customized the heck out of a Colt Series 70 back in the day, I would tell you to leave the GI stock and get yourself a Loaded SA or Kimber.




I've read several people speak of the loaded SA, and I do like my SA GI, so I would want to get another from SA

but which loaded?? (just trying to open up another can of worms!!)

I'm interested in target shooting and maybe competition later on, not looking to carry , concealed or defend with this 1911. Hope that narrow the selections down a bit.



When you say target shooting/competition, what type are you talking about? I know you mentioned bullseye earlier.

If you're looking for a bullseye gun, the SA Loaded is probably not the ticket, at least not out of the box. If you wanted to have some work done to it, it could be made into a bullseye gun, but then you might as well buy the GI and have a bullseye gun built. That way you're not wasting too many parts or too much money on the initial purchase.

If you're looking for a casual weekend shooter for fun plinking and maybe getting into IDPA/IPSC/other combat type stuff, then any of the Loaded models will work. The parkerized loaded model is the best deal/setup in my mind. It gives you what most people expect in a factory 1911 that isn't bare bones, ambi safety, beavertail, wood grips and night sights. Typically they shoot great out of the box and aren't to blingy, like the black stainless or polished stainless. Loaded models run $700 to $850 depending on the model.

All that said, SA makes a loaded stainless pistol with adjustable sights, kind of a combination of the above two, but you're still not going to have the great bullseye trigger or tight barrel/bushing fit that you would in a customized 1911. SA also makes the Match Target model. It sells for around $1200 and is advertised as their do everything competition gun. Not sure this one is worth the money though.

I really like Springfields, even sold them for a couple of years until I got out the gun business. I own SA's and a couple Colts, and 1 Dan Wesson. The Springfields would be the last to go if I ever had to get rid of them.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 2:00:59 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2006 2:47:07 PM EDT by munkalido]
Buy another. I too are looking for a 1911.. my first. Can't decide whether to buy cheap or a bit better for my first (500 or 1000... hmmm).

Really like those Kimbers.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 2:44:56 PM EDT
Trying to locate a Colt 1911WW1 repro and finding out none of the dealers in my area have one in stock, going on the internet and seeing original ones for sale for a few dollers more, I decided I might just get an original then. Turns out a dealer on the internet with an original I was interested in also had a WW1 repro! Just told him "I'll take both!"
Link Posted: 2/25/2006 11:50:59 AM EDT
IMHO - Customize the GI, make it into something unique that you'd never want to sell...and get another loaded model when you can.

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